I have a wall that is smooth (ish) large wood panels.

Originally, they were stained a wood color.

That has been painted over for years now.

I now need to bring the surface to super-smooth, so will be putting up a thin coat of spackle.

Can I spackle on the paint directly, or need I prime first? (The current paint is a light shade of latex based paint, probably 12 years old.)

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    You know, white paint is NOT the ideal projection surface. A good surface has a feature called retroreflection. That's what projection screens are all about. This seems like a lot of work for a screen surface that won't perform well; just get a projection screen on Craigslist. Mar 20, 2020 at 18:25
  • getting a screen will probably save a bunch of time/money instead of spackling over a wall (depending on the size)
    – depperm
    Mar 20, 2020 at 18:27
  • Spackle is for patching smaller areas not for covering an entire wall. Search for "how to build a home theater projection screen" to gain knowledge on projection screens. Invest your time wisely.
    – Alaska Man
    Mar 20, 2020 at 19:37
  • you're relying on the wood panels not moving - I hope your house is made of stone or some other inflexible material.
    – Jasen
    Oct 3, 2023 at 1:18

1 Answer 1


You CAN put drywall compound (please, not spackle - different products) over wood, but unless there's some major need to preserve every fractional inch of the room, it's generally much easier and better results to put drywall (you can use 1/4 or 3/8 rather than 1/2) over the wood surface first.

  • I agree. the Sheetrock won’t flake off like skim coating may if not properly prepared. Sheetrock mud can be used but possibly less work to follow ecrnwal’s advice I have used skim coat and paper to provide a Sheetrock look but it was more work in the long run.
    – Ed Beal
    Mar 22, 2020 at 0:46

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